Too $hort And Scarface Blow The Whistle


Hip Hop Honors taped this past Thursday night, and the high-energy show went off without a hitch, which may have had something to do with the rehearsals that took over Hammerstein Ballroom all last week. The stage was a veritable revolving door of talent, with Scarface passing the mic to Kid Rock during the Too $hort segment, and De La Soul fans like Mos Def and Q-Tip hanging around just to practice their rhymes. The morning of the taping, Bun B, Kid Rock, Scarface, Lil Jon and the Top Dog himself, Too $hort, got together to go through their set one last time.

Behind the Scenes: Old School Dance Fever!


The Wop, the Running Man, the Prep, the Smurf, the Patty Duke, the Psychobater Bugdown, the Basketball, the Jack Benny, the Carlton, the Pee Wee Herman, and of course the Robot (it’s your choice whether or not you want to include the “Panic Button” on that Robot). While the Hip Hop Honors artists were rehearsing, the grooves got ‘em thinking back to the old days, and some of the dances that dominated rap. Check the clip above, and start talking about your own faves in the comments section. Which dance were you good at?

See more of Travis McCoy playing host behind the scenes in our playlist.

Kid Rock Explains His Old School Jones


Kid Rock came out on the Hip Hop Honors stage last night to kick a little love Too $hort‘s way. The Rock ‘n’ Roll Jesus knows “Life Is…Too Short” inside and out. So as he grabbed the mic and “remembered how it all began,” he gave a little smooch to old school artists everywhere.

A couple days ago we sat down with the Detroit daredevil for a chat about his records finally becoming available on a digital service (you can download his tracks starting today exclusively on Rhapsody), and yep the talk spilled over to his favorite MCs from yesteryear. The thrust of that subject matter is captured in the clip above. We also got some new Kid’s sharing some studio ideas with T.I. these days.

Check out photos and live clips from the Hip Hop Honors show and its rehearsals.
Watch Hip Hop Honors on VH1 on Monday, October 6 at 10 ET.

Eve, Kid Rock and Others Go Til Break Of Dawn At HHH After-Party


The place to be after the taping of this year’s Hip Hop Honors show was the VH1 Save The Music after-party at Opera. A-list guests like honoree Too $hort munched on mini-burgers and pasta while the DJ spun, of course, hip-hop. Past honoree MC Lyte gave a surprise performance while the packed house of HHH honorees and attendees like Kid Rock and Michael Rapaport cheered her on. Upstairs in the exclusive VIP area, A Tribe Called Quest’s Q-Tip spun tunes from the DJ booth inside a private roped-off area while photographers snapped away and Kid Rock kicked back after his HHH performance.

Later in the evening, the party continued at downtown hotspot 1 OAK, where HHH performer Eve held court at a private table near the DJ booth. Eve chatted up professional boxer Zab Judah, who arrived with an entourage of five. The singer, who gave a memorable performance at the HHH taping singing about Slick Rick?s slice of pizza in his hit ?Mona Lisa,? hung out sipping cocktails until about 3 a.m. Don?t miss Hip Hop Honors when it airs Monday night at 10 p.m. As Eve told the VH1 Blog, ?The show was outta control.? [Getty Images]

?uestlove Confesses Isaac Hayes Phobia


Last night’s Hip Hop Honors show was insane — from the famous people lovefest on the red carpet to the floor-shaking renditions of some of the greatest songs in hip-hop. One of the most touching moments of the evening was when Cee-Lo, Estelle, Mos Def, Chuck D, Scarface and the Roots performed a heartfelt medley of the late, great Isaac Hayes‘ songs. But while it was nothing but love and respect last night, the Roots’ ?uestlove remembered some very different feelings about Hayes at this week’s rehearsals. Check out the clip above to see why, and tune in on Monday, October 6th at 10 p.m. to watch the show.

De La Never Dreamt They’d Be Honored


Last night was the taping of Hip Hop Honors, our massive tribute to the hip-hop heavyweights we’ve loved for so long. One of our favorites, De La Soul, chatted with us during rehearsals on Wednesday about what they thought was in store for them when they first formed over twenty years ago.

Tune in on Monday, October 6th at 10 p.m. to see De La and the other honorees bring down the house.

Hip Hop Honors: Concert Report!


The main thrust of our annual Hip Hop Honors show is simple. Great music was made a long time ago, so we make more great music to salute both its impact and endurance. Celebration is in the air because artists are getting well-deserved recognition. From the red carpet frenzy to the audience shout-alongs to the after-party chatter, everyone?s hyped because their favorite MCs are in the center ring, getting the props that they?ve truly earned. All night long, it?s all about a little thing called joy.

You could feel it from the way that Busta Rhymes was getting hugged by others on the carpet. You could feel it by the way Kid Rock was laughing in the lounge with the Sugarhill Gang?s Wonder Mike. You could feel it by the way Fat Joe shook his rump in the ballroom?s mezzanine during Slick Rick?s ?La Di Da Di.? Someone asked De La Soul’s DJ Mase how he felt when the trio was arriving at the start of the evening. ?Just like Campbell?s soup,? he said, ?MMM, MMM good.?

There were lots of on-stage highlights, and in the next few days we?re going to offer up some performance clips so you can get psyched for this Monday night, when the show premieres on VH1 at 10 pm. ET. Tomorrow, Friday, there will be load of photos from the festivities here in the blog, and on our Hip Hop Honors site.

Here are a few things to be on the look out for when you tune-in on Monday night.

1. All the energy that bounds around the room when Cypress Hill and their pals Mack 10, Gym Class Heroes, and Fat Joe blast through ?The Phuncky Feel One? and ?Insane in the Brain.? Now that?s the way to start a show.

2. The Strong Island camaraderie of Public Enemy?s Chuck D and Flavor Flav kicking their way through ?Stakes is High? during the De La part of the show. Earlier in the night Flav told me it was great to bounce rhymes off of Chuck again.

3. The way Gnarls Barkley?s Cee-lo did his best crooning routine in a heartfelt nod to the late Isaac Hayes during ?The Look of Love.? It was mellow enough to picture him singing it while sporting a smoking jacket and pipe.

4. The whole joint rocking a collective ?Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na? when De La Soul commanded the audience to fill in the refrain to the forever exuberant ?Me, Myself and I.?

5. Luther Campbell putting his whole heart into a fervent intro of Too $hort. Any crew would be lucky to have Mr. Parental Advisory as a hype man.

6. Eve singing about that slice of pizza in Slick Rick?s ?Mona Lisa.?

There’s lots of other cool stuff, too, of course. Keep your eye on the blog. It’s coming

Related Content
Hip Hop Honors Site
Red Carpet Arrival Photos
Show Performance Photos
Video: Sneak Rehearsal Footage!

Do De La Soul Hate “Me, Myself And I”?


Tonight’s the big Hip Hop Honors show, and we’ve been checking out rehearsals of all the honorees. We noticed a little something during De La Soul‘s run through. While singing “Me, Myself And I” the group diverted from the standard lyrics — instead of the usual “Or is it just my De La song?” they switched it to “Or is it ’cause we hate this song.” We caught up with the group to find out what prompted the switch.

Check out the show when it airs on Monday, October 6th at 10 p.m.

Hip Hop Honors: Real Deal Rehearsal Clips!


You kinda knew that Gym Class Heroes’ Travis McCoy was insane in the brain, right? But you might not have known how how deep a Cypress Hill fanatic he is. You will when Hip Hop Honors 2008 is over. The show’s taping in NYC tonight, and we’ve got some video snippets of what viewers can expect when it airs on Monday, October 6. It’s all here. Chuck D and Flav rolling together again, Fab Five Freddie and Biz Markie talking about the tough economy (“Don’t Want Drama, vote for Obama!”), Estelle and Q-Tip celebrating De La Soul‘s “A Roller Skating Jam Called Saturday,” and lots more.

Click right here to see the full playlist of Hip Hop Honors rehearsals.

Check back Friday morning for great photo galleries and blog reports on the events.

Lil Jon Minds His Words


While rehearsing for the Hip Hop Honors segment that will pay tribute to Too Short, Lil Jon had a lil tantrum about getting bleeped for saying “bitch.” In the video below, he explains why it only makes sense to utter the epithet during a salute to the man who devoted a part of his career to perfecting the pronunciation of it (“beyotch,” anyone?).

And there’s a bit more linguistic chatter with Jon below, when we ask him if he’s tired of his catchphrase, “Yeaaaah!” (Spoiler: the word he uses to answer proves just how sick of it he is.)

Watch Hip Hop Honors 2008 on VH1 on Monday, October 6, 10 pm ET.